Motive

Motive

This season on Motive from WBEZ Chicago, an investigative series that follows a group of young women seeking justice abroad and examines why there was silence for almost a decade.... Show More

Episodes

July 14, 2020 6 min

We're hard at work on a new season of Motive, but in the meantime we want to share another podcast we think you'll enjoy. Introducing a new show from LAist Studios: California City. Deep in the Mojave Desert, there is a little town with a big name and a bizarre history: California City. For decades, real estate developers have sold a dream here: if you buy land now, you’ll be rich one day. Thousands of people bought this dr...

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March 27, 2020 28 min

“Nobody talks about ‘the after,’” one woman said about sexual assault. “The during is terrible, but it’s the after, that’s the hard part.”

On the final episode of Motive, the “remembering it for the rest of your life” part of the story.

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March 20, 2020 33 min

The verdict in a 2016 gang rape case known as La Manada, or “The Wolfpack,” ignited mass protests across Spain. It kicked off Spain’s #MeToo movement and prompted a call for change to the country’s sexual assault laws.

On today’s episode, the case and the fierce debate that followed.

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March 13, 2020 35 min

A Spanish prosecutor opened a criminal investigation in the spring of 2018. Almost two years have passed. We go to Spain to see what’s happening.

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March 6, 2020 2 min

The powerful investigative work of the Motive podcast is directly supported by WBEZ members.

Your donation today is critical to the future of Motive — and all of the investigative reporting that comes from WBEZ.

Plus, when you donate, you’ll be invited to join us for a virtual Q&A after this season wraps. Submit your questions in advance and then join us live to get a behind the scenes look at Season 2 — along with updates on any...

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February 28, 2020 35 min

While studying abroad in Spain, Hayley McAleese and Carly Van Ostenbridge reported to both the police and their school that they had been sexually assaulted. It didn’t go as expected.

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February 21, 2020 27 min

Most of the women in this story did not go to the police. And while some told a friend, family member or therapist what happened, most say they tried to bury it and move on. 

Why? And what made these women decide to finally break their silence?

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February 14, 2020 28 min

“If you’re robbed while you’re drunk everyone still understands that’s a robbery,” says a former prosecutor. “Or if you’re beaten up while you’re drunk, everyone still understands that’s an assault.”

In today’s episode, we look at the double-standard often applied in cases of sexual assault.

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February 7, 2020 32 min

Gabrielle Vega alleges her tour guide raped her in 2013. Nearly five years later, she learns she’s not the only one and decides to do something about it.

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February 6, 2020 34 min

A college student dies on her 21st birthday in Spain. Authorities rule her death an accident. Years later, questions arise after a TV segment airs about someone she was with that night.

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January 24, 2020 2 min

A story of years of silence, how it was broken, and the young women who are finally coming forward to seek justice. A preview of WBEZ’s new season of Motive, coming soon.

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November 22, 2019 31 min

The big question is ... why?

For photos, video, court documents and more visit the Motive page at the Chicago Sun-Times.

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November 15, 2019 33 min

Now a multi-millionaire, T.J. could have done anything. But he called himself Batman and started a violent gang war.

For photos, video, court documents and more visit the Motive page at the Chicago Sun-Times.

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November 8, 2019 31 min

T.J. gets angry watching a heavyweight match between two persuasive Chicago lawyers. One side claims the police framed T.J. for a murder. The other side claims that T.J. is a murderer. 

For photos, video, court documents and more visit the Motive page at the Chicago Sun-Times.

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November 1, 2019 24 min

In prison, T.J. becomes a part of the gang hierarchy and dives deep into religion. Not long after inmate number K51114 is released, cracks start to appear.  

For photos, video, court documents and more visit the Motive page at the Chicago Sun-Times.

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October 25, 2019 27 min

Brian Nelson was the leader of T.J.'s gang: The Simon City Royals. Nelson spent almost thirty harrowing years in prison. What was left when he came out?

For photos, video, court documents and more, visit the Motive page at the Chicago Sun-Times.


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October 18, 2019 27 min

After his conviction is overturned, T.J. leaves prison and begins enjoying his freedom. Meanwhile, Frank receives some emails from a mysterious man telling him he's got the story all wrong.

For photos, video, court documents and more, visit the Motive page at the Chicago Sun-Times.

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In 1993, a young man was murdered in front of a Honey Baked Ham store on Belmont Avenue. We return to the scene of the crime to find out what happened on the night that put T.J. in prison for 16 years. 

For photos, video, court documents and more, visit the Motive page at the Chicago Sun-Times.

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October 4, 2019 28 min

T.J. is charged with murder and sent to juvenile jail. Although only 13 when arrested, he's prosecuted as an adult.

For photos, video, court documents and more, visit the Motive page at the Chicago Sun-Times.


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September 27, 2019 29 min

A fellow gang member and T.J.'s mom describe the young T.J. before the arrest that put him away for so long. And we hear T.J.'s version of the night of the murder. 


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